\ ˈtrīt How to pronounce trite (audio) \
triter; tritest

Definition of trite

: hackneyed or boring from much use : not fresh or original

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Other Words from trite

tritely adverb
triteness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for trite

trite, hackneyed, stereotyped, threadbare mean lacking the freshness that evokes attention or interest. trite applies to a once effective phrase or idea spoiled from long familiarity. "you win some, you lose some" is a trite expression hackneyed stresses being worn out by overuse so as to become dull and meaningless. all of the metaphors and images in the poem are hackneyed stereotyped implies falling invariably into the same pattern or form. views of minorities that are stereotyped and out-of-date threadbare applies to what has been used until its possibilities of interest have been totally exhausted. a mystery novel with a threadbare plot

Examples of trite in a Sentence

The wrong sort of built environment, she argued, wrecked the social fabric of cities. This view seems almost trite today, but in the 1960's it was insurgent. — Robert Kuttner, New York Times Book Review, 12 Mar. 2000 Experts are always unique (their tritest pronouncements are packaged as news) … — Wendy Kaminer, New York Times Book Review, 11 Feb. 1990 Its wares are soiled with frequent handling; its styles are so hackneyed, trite, and homogeneous, they constitute a single style … — Joyce Carol Oates, The Profane Art, 1983 That argument has become trite. by the time the receiving line had ended, the bride and groom's thanks sounded trite and tired
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Recent Examples on the Web These days, more of my thoughts arrive as trite, Twitter-size observations, and my more offbeat tastes have been transformed into smoother, more mainstream ones by the centripetal force of algorithmic recommendations. Kevin Roose, New York Times, "Welcome to the ‘Rabbit Hole’," 16 Apr. 2020 Out of context, this might look like a trite metaphor for personal liberation. Judy Berman, Time, "Netflix's Unorthodox Tells the Riveting Tale of One Woman's Flight From Hasidic Brooklyn," 24 Mar. 2020 Only in movies and trite fiction do inventive, creative enthusiasts effectively sell a plan to hidebound, by-the-book men who initially pass it off as foolish whimsy. Dallas News, "How a British officer and a team of young women outsmarted Nazi Germany’s U-boats," 4 Feb. 2020 Maybe there was something to this thing for me, in the new year — something trite but true about pushing out of my comfort zone. Alli Harvey, Anchorage Daily News, "When a rainy day turns into a wondrous, wintry night, everything is right with the world," 25 Jan. 2020 For all its contrived urgency, Blast Beat is a curiously uninvolving drama that attempts to mine contemporary reality but comes up only with something trite and formulaic. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Blast Beat': Film Review | Sundance 2020," 27 Jan. 2020 There is one hardy perennial — the hellebore — that has steadily won a place in the heart of the gardener over the past couple of decades and that shows no sign of becoming disfavored or trite. Adrian Higgins, Washington Post, "The hellebore: Popular, early and now in a dazzling variety," 15 Jan. 2020 Likewise those who’d court attention, their concerns too trite to mention. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "A Christmas sports poem: Clarence earns an encore, and his halo," 24 Dec. 2019 Sounds hopelessly trite, but works well through an honest story, touching relationships and authentic glimpses into the power of women in sports. Bruce Jenkins,, "Missing Bay Area sports? Watch one of these 10 greatest sports movies of all time," 14 Mar. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trite.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of trite

1548, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for trite

Latin tritus, from past participle of terere to rub, wear away — more at throw entry 1

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Time Traveler for trite

Time Traveler

The first known use of trite was in 1548

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Statistics for trite

Last Updated

28 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Trite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for trite


How to pronounce trite (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of trite

: not interesting or effective because of being used too often : not fresh or original


\ ˈtrīt How to pronounce trite (audio) \
triter; tritest

Kids Definition of trite

: so common that the newness and cleverness have worn off : stale trite remarks

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More from Merriam-Webster on trite

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trite

Spanish Central: Translation of trite

Nglish: Translation of trite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trite for Arabic Speakers

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